Fast education via the phone…. the ‘Asteroid program’

How do you reach health care professionals that are scattered throughout Timor Leste and provide them with up-to-date and easily accessible information to assist decision making and improve clinical care?

You find a partner, Catalpa International, who will work with you to deliver the information via the phone. With more than 90% (and climbing) of health care professionals in Timor Lest using smartphones it was logical to develop training on a platform that they were familiar with and that they could access easily.

The ASTEROID app was originally scheduled to be rolled out towards the end of this year… but the COVID19 pandemic has seen it fast-tracked to be used by nearly 1000 users across Timor Leste as a source of up-to-date COVID19 training.

The training is delivered in Tetun (the attached is an English version), is easily updated with the latest information, provides accurate information, fact sheets and guidelines and is available to those in even the remotest areas.

Going forward, Maluk Timor will be developing a wide range of content on the app. The app is a learning aid to improve engagement with the teaching content. It will be delivered in Tetun (+/- English) and include custom-designed modules adapted from the face-to-face teaching content.

The app will enable easy access to fact sheets, national guidelines, algorithms to guide clinical practice, and micro-learning modules.

The microlearning includes pre-testing, short videos and animations, key teaching points, checks for comprehension along the way, and post-testing to confirm completion of the activity. This can be operated offline in the health care professional’s own time, at the bedside (to look up clinical practice guidelines) or as a study tool.

An Australian aid initiative implemented by Maluk Timor on behalf of the Australian Government.

Help us do even more

Even though healthcare in Timor-Leste has improved, there is still so much more to do.  

A small amount of money goes a long way with the per person health budget less than US$100 per year. 


Covers the cost of petrol for a month so a healthcare worker can provide home visits around Dili.

$58 p/month

in 12 months

Covers the cost of running a nutrition referral project in one community healthcare centre.

$650 p/month

Covers the full cost to employ a nurse who can help deliver our programs.